HCI 513 was basically a class about “An integrated study of design, technical, and strategic issues for Internet commerce”. Since I work full time as a web administrator I didn’t think I would learn much, but the professor was very informed and provided addiitional insight into the various aspects of e-commerce. Particularly, I learned even with the nice web services offered by FedEx and UPS, that implementing shipping on an e-commerce site is fairly complex. The projects we have worked on at work always charged a flat rate, although we are working on an implementation now that integrates our publishing group’s DB, which has a shipping calculator. But that is done on the inventory/fullfillment app side, so all we do is pass the address and get the data back from the API.
I have been to Japan several times now. Each trip has been enjoyable and thought provoking. Being married to a Japanese means that I do not see just the tourist areas, but instead have had the opportunity to see daily Japanese life. First, I love japanese food (that is an understatement), so that makes staying there quite easy. Second, well I mentioned it already, I am married to a Japanese.
I will post some of my journals from the trips over the past year at some point soon. Actually, that is another reason why I started to put this site together. The main banner for this site (the standard design) is from a shot I took from Fujisawa city where my inlaws live. It was during December 2003. I don’t speak Japanese yet, but am planning on learning (well, I have been studying on my own, but it is slow going, until I finish my grad degree). At any rate, I mentioned in conversation with my wife’s family, that I was going out to take a picture of Mt Fuji from the roof of their apartment (which my wife translated) and her dad laughed because he did not think I would get much. I went up on the roof of the apartment and could see Fuji-san quite clearly and took some good shots. As I said above, I will post more pics and text when I have time.
I am taking a class on the issues of designing software/websites for the disabled. It is very informative so far. It seems that many businesses are ignoring this at their peril. While one case was dismissed two years ago (Southwest Airlines), another went against the organization (Marta), and several more were settled out of court for nominal sums. Well nominal in the sense that they could have spent that money upfront on accessibility and avoided the negative publicity.